Students ‘Step’ out of comfort zone as summer projects win awards!

| September 10, 2012 | 0 Comments
katie Holland

The Department of Health is delighted to announce that Kate Holland, a Step student working at Ramsey and District Cottage Hospital, has been awarded ‘Best Presentation’ at the annual Step Scheme Awards competition coordinated by the Department of Economic Development.

The Department was pleased to welcome four Step students on placements over the eight-week academic summer break. They were all engaged on specific projects demonstrating and expanding their research, analysis and reporting skills.

David Killip, Chief Executive at the Department of Health said: “It is always refreshing to work with these enterprising undergraduates through the Step Scheme. The worthwhile projects completed by these students will be very valuable in supporting the Department’s work, to improve access to all our services through the internet, provide better management of patient records and develop enhanced staff training. Very well done to all four students who took part and the staff for making these placements possible.”

The presentations, followed by an award ceremony, took place at the Nunnery campus of the Isle of Man College of Further and Higher Education on 24 August 2012.

When pitted against the 32 Step students who had undertaken placements across the public and private sectors, Kate wowed the two independent judges (Helen Cowley and Maree Ashworth) with her knowledge and understanding of the role the internet can play in the access and provision of healthcare services. Kate delivered a strong, clear five-minute presentation of her project evaluating and providing research based proposals for updating the current website, including a video of the services available at Ramsey and District Cottage Hospital, which she filmed and edited with her own equipment and software. The video is available here: www.gov.im/health/services/hospitals/ramsey

Improving access to health services is a key component of the Department’s Strategy for the Future of Health Services in the Isle of Man. The Department’s website now provides the foundation for the e-business programme, which will deliver appropriate high quality public services in an online environment, wherever and whenever this best suits individual needs. Sophie Miller, who enjoyed her placement at Noble’s Hospital, was assigned a similar project to evaluate the current website and provide research based proposals for updating. The web projects completed by Kate and Sophie, will enhance the current service provision, but most importantly, will provide a true public perception about how online services and support can be further developed.

Tom Bateson, working with The Learning Team at Keyll Darree, designed and developed a database for the 38 mandatory training courses delivered by the Learning Team. This will allow managers to monitor training needs and compliance with the key performance indicator in their area. Not only is the database to be piloted for three months in four different areas of the Department, but Tom also created a training video and manual. The way he presented his work on this project to the Step judges won him the runner-up award for ‘Best Presentation’.

Natalie Coleman teamed up with the Salaried Primary Care Dental Service, to produce a working system for the maintenance of patients’ paper records including an archive database, which has been adopted and allows the staff quick and easy access to patient details as soon as they contact the service.

The Step scheme is an internationally recognised student placement programme, which has been co-ordinated on the Island since 1998. Step is a Department of Economic Development backed service designed to help other Government Departments and small private sector businesses to kick-start and manage new development projects, which are achievable within a realistic timescale and at an affordable price. Every year Step recruits the brightest, most enterprising undergraduates and matches them with the specific needs of the submitted business projects. Employing a student through the scheme can bring real results, positively influencing business objectives as they bring with them innovative ideas and skills. Learning and developing their abilities within a nurturing workplace gives the student valuable work experience.

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